Peter Mombaerts

Speaker information

Prof. Peter Mombaerts is the director of the Department of Molecular Neurogenetics at the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics in Frankfurt,  and works on the neurobiology of smell in mice. Among his research interests his main challenge is to answer the question of how each olfactory sensory neuron in the mouse manages to express just one gene from the repertoire of these 1,200 genes. In particular, the mechanisms that regulate the probability of OR gene choice are not well understood.

Coding Olfaction. Peter Mombaerts

Wednesday, 4 September, 2013 - 11:30 to 13:00

The mammalian olfactory system is increasingly recognized as an attractive model system for studying the formation of neural circuits during development. An olfactory sensory neuron expresses just one the of ~1000 odorant receptor genes in the mouse genome. Axons of neurons a given odorant receptor gene converge onto a few of the ~1800 glomeruli in the olfactory bulb of the mouse. A mapping problem is thus posed: ~1000 populations of neurons, each expressing a distinct odorant receptor gene, must be sorted onto ~1800 glomeruli.

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